World Liver Day 2023: Diabetes is considered to be a leading risk factor for Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) and various other liver diseases. Therefore, it becomes all the more vital for diabetic people to car for their liver health.
World Liver Day 2023: Liver is one of the complex organs in the body which is responsible for digestion, immunity and metabolism as well. Not many people are well aware of the disorders associated with liver unlike other bodily systems. Every year April 19, is celebrated as World Liver Day to spread awareness about disorders and diseases pertaining to liver and how can we manage it. According to World Health Organisation (WHO), In India, liver ailments amount to the 10th most common reason for death. We have heard of fatty liver and non fatty liver problems, but did you know that diabetes too affects the liver functioning? Diabetes is a leading risk factor for Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) and various other liver diseases.
How does living with diabetes for a long time can affect one’s liver?
Living with diabetes for a long time affects the liver and various organs and systems in the body.Dr Vikrant Kale, Consultant Gastroenterologist, Hepatologist & Interventional Endoscopist, Ruby Hall Clinic, shared exclusively with india.com, the role of the liver is to filter toxins from the blood, producing bile which helps in digestion, and maintaining blood sugar levels.
Diabetes can damage the liver by increasing the risk of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), a condition where there is a buildup of fat in the liver. Diabetes if poorly managed can also lead to other liver conditions such as cirrhosis, a chronic liver disease that causes the liver to become scarred and eventually can lose its ability to function properly. Cirrhosis causes a lot of complications, including the buildup of fluid in the abdomen, bleeding from enlarged veins in the esophagus or stomach, and also increases the risk of liver cancer.
Diabetes not only directly affects the liver, but other factors associated with diabetes can also contribute to liver damage which includes obesity, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol levels, which are common in people with diabetes and can increase the risk of developing liver diseases.
How to take care of your liver when suffering from diabetes?
If you are living with diabetes, it is very important to control your blood sugar levels and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Here are the simple tips
- Control your blood sugar levels: If Blood sugar levels are high it can increase the risk of liver damage, so it is important to monitor your blood sugar levels regularly and with the help of your doctor develop a diabetes management plan.
- Maintaining a healthy weight: If a person is overweight or obese it increases the risk of developing fatty liver disease, so it is important to maintain a healthy weight through diet and exercise.
- Eat a Healthy diet: A diet high in saturated and trans fats can increase the risk of fatty liver disease. One needs to focus on a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, protein, and healthy fats.
- Restricting alcohol intake: Alcohol can increase the risk of liver disease, and people with diabetes are at a higher risk for alcohol-related liver disease. It is recommended to limit the consumption of alcohol to moderate levels or avoid it altogether.
- Regular Health check-ups: Doing regular liver function tests helps in monitoring liver health and early detection of any problems. Important to visit your doctor on a regular basis which helps in screening for potential complications causing liver disease.
Liver disease doesn’t always cause noticeable symptoms, but it can cause serious damage to the liver. So it’s very important to do regular checkups, consult your doctor and follow the doctor’s recommendations for liver screening tests.